Did UK soldier take part in murder of Kenyan woman?

The identity of a British soldier who allegedly killed a Kenyan woman is widely known yet no action has been taken.

The identity of a British soldier, who allegedly got intimate with a Kenyan woman before killing her and dumping her body in a septic tank about a decade ago, is widely known in the army yet no action has been taken, The Sunday Times reports.

In his defence, the suspect has dismissed the allegations as rumours despite his name coming up in the investigations several times but missing from the list of officers who had booked the room at that time.

And in Kenya, the British High Commissioner Jane Marriott says the UK is fully cooperating with the investigation.

British High Commissioner to Kenya Jane Marriott. [File, Standard]

“In 2012, the UK’s Special Investigation Branch carried out initial enquiries in Kenya, including providing information about British personnel to Kenyan police. No further requests were received at that time. Following the conclusion of a Kenyan inquest in 2019, we understand that the Kenyan authorities are looking into the murder. We will support that Kenyan police investigation,” her statement read in part.

The body of 21-year-old Agnes Wanjiru was discovered on March 31, 2012, at the Lion's Court Inn hotel in Nanyuki, by a worker who noticed a foul smell while in the line of duty.

 All this, while her family searched for their kin, who left behind a five-month-old daughter.

According to the publication’s investigation, soldiers who took part in the drunken night activities with local prostitutes said they were shown Wanjiru’s’ body that evening.

“Her fingers and toes were missing due to advanced decomposition. She had a 2cm stab wound to her lower right abdomen and a blunt force injury to her chest. Her lungs had collapsed,” The Sunday Times reports.

It says five soldiers from the unit gave the same name belonging to soldier X and by the time Wanjiru’s body was found, all the British Army Training Unit Kenya soldiers who had been at the hotel were back in the UK.

The October 23 evening article says Soldier Y had recalled how Soldier X joined his colleagues at a bar they were drinking in.

He adds their colleague looked distressed then said 'Help me, help me.... I've killed her'.

'He took me to the tank and lifted it up, and I looked in and I just remember seeing her in there. My heart sank. My mind just went blank. The only thing I could say to him was: 'I'll never forgive you for this,'' the paper reports Soldier Y as saying.

The article says Soldier Y accused the army of a cover-up, saying nothing had been done despite his confessions on the alleged killing.

He says that when Soldier Y opened up about murdering someone, some of his colleagues went with him and confirmed he had done it.

When the publication sought his comment on the allegations, he denied taking part in the murder.

“Honestly, I’m not surprised because there were rumours in my battalion. If you speak to people in my battalion they’ll say that” he told The Sunday Times.

Pressed to reveal his whereabouts on the night of the murder, he asked that he be allowed to contact his lawyer.

Additionally, another soldier from the unit, identified as soldier Z, claimed Soldier X told colleagues he had killed her by accident in a sex game.

“[His story was that] he’d been having sex with her and he’d choked her and she’d died,” Soldier Z said as reported by the Sunday Times.

In the course of the Investigations by the publication, The Foreign Office and British High Commission in Nairobi, the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), the attorney-general of Kenya and the Lions Court Hotel did not respond despite efforts by the authors to reach them for a comment on the incident.

However, a police inquiry was opened in 2012 after the deceased’s body was discovered.

The Times reports that the inquiry identified nine UK soldiers who had booked the hotel then, out of which soldiers X and Y were not included.